Health expert speaks on vaccine apprehension, herd immunity

Health expert speaks on vaccine apprehension, herd immunity
(Source: KSLA)

SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - The Louisiana Department of Health reports that 10,073 people have died from COVID-19 and 654,876 people have completed their vaccine series.

Governor John Bel Edwards announced that starting on Monday, March 29, people age 16 and up would be able to get their COVID-19 vaccine. However, there are still people who are apprehensive about getting the vaccine.

“I feel like its something extra in it, and it’s not healthy for us,” said Shreveport resident Talisa Daniels.

Linda Patterson says she felt uneasy, but after losing a family member, she became more open to it.

“I’ve talked to a couple of people who had it [the vaccine], and they were okay. They came out okay so I’m just trusting that once I do get it I will as well,” she said.

LSU Health Dr. John Vanchiere explained some of the reasons why some people might feel uneasy.

“There are still folks who are still a little nervous that the vaccine was produced in a relatively short length of time think the important thing to note here is the technology is not new while the vaccine is the technology is something, we’ve been working on for decades,” he said.

Experts estimate about 70 percent of people need to be vaccinated to reach herd immunity. In the ArkLaTex, about 12 to 14 percent of all people are vaccinated.

“We have a long way to go to get there, and I think the most important point now is the quicker we vaccinate not only do we reach herd immunity, but we prevent the emergence of variants,” Dr. Vanchiere said.

He says getting the vaccine can help reach herd immunity, and it can help ease the stress of health care workers.

“The more people that come out and get vaccinated that helps us as healthcare workers know that there is an end in sight, because we’ve got doctors and nurses in our hospitals who have been working months and months taking care of extremely sick people,” he said.

Increasing access to COVID-19 vaccine still not enough to convince some people to get the shot

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